It’s about lessons learned, it’s about giving a little piece of me each day to my daughter. In the end this will be her legacy. It won’t be an empire, it won’t be monetary gain, but will be far more precious to her then both those things combined. Whose life will she touch growing up? Will she see things differently? Will she know what to do with these life experiences?
For the next few hours, I will post once an hour, an interesting experiment. Will you remember the things I will mention here? What do you remember? In what way have I, or the people I mention here touched your life? Keep in mind what follows is my own observations and thoughts and are intended as a top down perspective. If I forgot you, please keep in mind the list is long and having to remember all this stuff clearly takes time and brain power. It wasn’t intentional, I assure you. Also for ease and space constraints, I’ll be jumping forward a lot. This is kind of a “Highlights reel”, of those who made impressions and left me with a legacy.
We often times take what’s around us, and the people we meet along the way for granted. Do we ever stop and think exactly what roles those people took in our lives? When we’re asked as children who our heroes are, how many of us responded with, “My best friend” or, “My parents”. I seriously doubt any of us did. I began contemplating a week or so ago, about what it was I’d would eventually be leaving my daughter with, what kind of Legacy would be hers to take up? It occurred to me that it wasn’t just me that would leave an impression on her life; it was everyone she ever comes in contact with. This line of thought, led me to my own life and the people I ran across in growing up. Many of these people are still in my life in some form of fashion, those that are not, left me with something. What they left behind isn’t tangible, you can’t hold it in your hand and its far more precious than anything physical could be.
Most everyone knows where I was born, so I’ll skip this part, especially since I was too young to remember anything. Let me start in New Mexico, 1985 or so. I was five years old and we moved into the apartments in Rio Rancho. I was growing to the point in my life when things would leave impressions and what happened prior to that, really isn’t what this exercise is about. The family members that helped get me to five will play a bigger part in this later, so we’ll return to them.
When you talk about people that influence you growing up, often times it’s the first ones that last the longest as life goes on. This doesn’t really need to be just parents, often times its friends. When we lived in Rio Rancho we met a family of three. Each one of them left a mark in my life. The husband was a tall, rail thin man with a heart the size of Texas, drove trucks for a living, and would be gone for long periods of time. He loved his family and was the first to show me that work often required sacrifices. To this day the mother is like a second mom, who helped watch over me growing up at the apartments. She left me with the knowledge, that motherhood was more than a name; it was hard work and discipline. After all, she had, at times, three kids instead of just one. Then there’s the daughter of these three fine people. Few things make an impact as a rock to the head. Although it wasn’t me that got hit in the head, it nevertheless makes an interesting way one enters another’s life. And so my second sister entered my life. As nerdy and carefree as I am, she was the kind of person that no matter what I did, she forgave me. Thus I learned humility and forgiveness.
Moving from the apartments to our house on Capri Court brought new life experiences. Here I met people that although left their mark on my life, didn’t stay on a path I could or wanted to follow. I did however meet one charismatic character who had a big impact on my life. We lost contact like most people do, but because I grew up and nostalgic, I perused finding him and only within the last few years have we reconnected. He taught me sacrifice and bravery, the kind of sacrifice made by jumping on a grenade. The kind of bravery one faces, when looking down the lions maw.